bitch why podcast by Yaroslava Bondar October 21, 2020
Wait there’s a ‘Bitch, Why’ podcast?
Gaia Malin and Neeta Thadani lay on Malin’s floor discussing Jojo Rabbit, the movie about a Nazi youth with Hitler as an imaginary friend. This discussion ends up being more than three hours long.
“I changed Gaia’s mind on somethings, Gaia changed my mind on some things,” remembered Thadani.
This back and forth, give and take, was the spark for the creation of “Bitch, Why?”, a podcast that celebrates the joy of making something just because you feel like it.
Kulture Hub hopped on a Zoom call with the team, consisting of the pod’s hosts Gaia Malin (they/them), Neeta Thadani (she/they), and editor Cameron Frye (he/him) who met during their first years at NYU, to see how they made the podcast happen.
With Thadani in California, Malin in Maine, and Frye in New York, getting the pod up hasn’t been easy. “It was rough at the start to figure out exactly how we’re going to do it,” Frye said.
“But I knew that really all you need for a podcast is a microphone and a way to communicate with someone.”
He made sure they had proper sound treatment for the walls of the space they were recording in and that mics were placed correctly. They meet on Zoom and count down together so Frye can sync the recordings. “After that, it runs pretty smoothly,” he said.
Thadani speaks of having “only” 15 episodes and there’s still a noticeable surprise at the growing number of listeners. However, they’re also becoming more confident with the podcast.
While they started off practicing the episodes, they now just jump in. “We used to do more scripting, but I think we’ve gotten to understand our format better,’ said Malin.
For new episodes they bring in notes and know the talking points but other than that, they let the conversation develop naturally.
In the beginning of the podcast, these conversations could take up to three hours. “It really hit an accumulation in the Hamilton episode where we had a three-hour recording and I texted them and told ‘I’m going to be there to help time you guys’,” Frye said.
They figured that a recording time of an hour and a half gave Frye enough to work with while not being overwhelmingly long. He will now send them text messages with time updates to keep them on track.
Becoming more familiar with the podcast structure has also helped them stay on time.
“Over the course of recording, [we’re] figuring out what we sound like, what segments sound like, what the structure is, [and] our recording time is so much shorter,” Thadani said. “Even the few times we’ve recorded without Cameron, we’ve gotten to those places faster.”
When asked why a podcast, Malin said that
“I think part of the way we process is that [Neeta] and I are both kinda [sic] verbal processors, so we understand more what we think when we talk about it with each other.”
The podcast title plays into this need to verbally process their thoughts. “We’re not so much criticizing [the piece of media] as that we’re trying to understand it and we’re asking questions about it to figure out why we feel the way we feel when experiencing it,” Malin said.
With Malin on a farm in Maine, recording has been tricky at times. With connectivity issues and a full schedule, planning in recordings can be hard. Open communication has helped navigate this.
“I can go to the team and be like ‘hey, my life is overwhelming right now’,” they said, “and they’ll either be like how are we going to work around our process in order to make sure that you can make something with us or how are we going to be able to make something so that you can catch up with your life.”
“We all have a very deep love for each other and we’ve been able to connect that to a professional space in a really cool way.”Neeta Thadani
To Thadani, it’s not only about holding each other accountable but also, and maybe even more, about holding each other.
The team also stressed that they don’t criticize out of hate for any of the media.
“I hope that we can live more in that uncomfortable zone,” Thadani said. To them, you should be able to love something but also see things it could improve.
So (bitch) why should you start a podcast?
The answer is simple: because you want to go make stuff with your friends and because, as Malin said “you love something but care about it being better.”